March 30, 2010

Heads up...

A man stands next to a sign that warns passers by of fly balls coming from the Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium in Manoa, Hawaii

Signs are always interesting. The only time I don't like photographing signs is when they are being used as a message board to convey opinions or messages like "Lingle is da man!" or whatever have you...come to think of it i might have held a sign like that when i was in high school protesting something or another...

but that is neither here nor there...

More after the jump...

March 29, 2010

Eddie Would Go...

Kohl Christensen rides a wave during the first round of the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau Competition big wave surfing contest on December 8, 2009 in Waimea, Hawaii. Thousands of spectators and surfers are flocking to Hawaii's beaches to see some of the largest waves in the state in half a decade. Forecasters are predicting waves could reach heights of 50 feet.(Kent Nishimura/Getty Images)

The image above of Big-Wave surfer Kohl Christensen was shot while on assignment for  Getty Images.  This image ran everywhere.  New York Times, TIME Magazine, Wall Street Journal.  Suffice it to say, I was stoked.

Twenty-eight of the best surfers from around the world plunged board-first into the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau Big Wave Invitational - one of surfing's most prestigious and rarest events - on a Tuesday morning in December of last year.  People from all over the world and across the state of Hawaii flocked to Oahu's north shore in anticipation of this rare surf event.

The last time the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau Big Wave Invitational was held was 2004, and the contest itself had only run six times before that in the past 24 years.  This is because the contest requires extremely large waves measuring anywhere from 20ft to 60ft.  But that's enough about "The Eddie" Onto my story...the day before "The Eddie"

It was a Sunday night, and I had received a call Hugh Gentry, a local freelancer and good friend, called me up asking if I would be able to cover for him (He's a stringer for Thompson Reuters, but he had taken a gig from Quiksilver at the time...) because the waves were supposed to be GINORMOUS.  Reuters wanted coverage, and if Hugh had to shoot for Quiksilver, he wouldn't be able to shoot for Reuters.  I called Cory Lum, a good friend and mentor, and asked if he wanted to tag along to the North Shore. (He indicated that he had an interest in going along.)

Just to warn you, dear reader, the photo below the break may be found offensive to some, please do not judge my character, or make rash decisions about me because of this image. :) haha! I kid, Cory. You are a great friend and mentor...not to mention a phenomenal photographer.  As Austo-D would say..."Cory...he's got the Fu!"

More photos after the break...


I was working at the Atherton YMCA when the news broke. A 8.8 magnitude earthquake stuck Chile, and created a tsunami which put the entire pacific on alert.

CNN wasn’t really helping the situation at all. Reporting that there would be 40ft waves, and even at one point saying that waves would be 40 meters. “Holy Tall Tales Batman! 40 meters!” 40 meters is, of couse, ONE HUNDRED TWENTY FEET. get the facts right CNN…

Thankfully, Hawaii dodged a bullet, and no major wave came and slapped the living crap out of the islands. I wouldn’t really have liked to be floating in the middle of the Pacific Ocean a top my bed.

I digress, back to the chain of events that day.

It was 2:00am, and Getty Images had sent me an email asking if I was up, and available for coverage. Getty has been a good client in the past with Obama Duty, the Eddie Aikau, and other stuff, so I obliged them.

I hadn’t had anysleep, and didnt really feel like shooting while dopped up on a 5 hour energy, so i told my editor, “I need some sleep! will head out in an hour or so…i have been up since 7am the previous day!”

So i went home. popped the batteries on the charger, cleared my cards, and caught an hour of sleep. I ran out the door, and started to look for people buying supplies, and/or freaking out about the Tsunami.

Drove through Waikiki, and didn’t find much. Streets were emptier than usual, but at 5am everywhere is practically deserted. I drove to Times Supermarket on Waialae. What luck! They weren’t open, but had a line forming outside!

Okay. so it wasn’t really a line…more like a crowd. Thank god it wasn’t a mob. Yikes!

HONOLULU - FEBRUARY 27: Shoppers line up in front of a grocery store as they wait for it to open Saturday, Feb. 27, 2010, in Honolulu. Hawaii residents are stocking up on food and emergency supplies Saturday for a potentially damaging tsunami, after a massive earthquake off Chile sent waves across the Pacific Ocean. (Photo by Kent Nishimura/Getty Images)
More Photos after the break

March 13, 2010

Clearing my head

A couple poses for a portrait at the Pali Lookout. In the background, Kaneohe, Kailua, and clouds as far as the eye could see.

So I went for a drive the other day. A very brief drive between meetings, group study sessions and developing film in the Photo Lab.  Life is strange how it can come at you so very quickly.

This semester is rapidly coming to a close and I'm closer to graduation, but not close to getting a job that I want. It's been...not a lot of fun watching as the industry gets smaller, jobs get cut, and good people are forced to find jobs doing things outside of a field they love so very much.

On my drive, I ended up at the Pali Lookout.  It was a beautiful day; clouds as far as the eye could see.  Feeling the wind rush against my face, I could only try to clear my head, and tell myself...

"All will be well."